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Landlord problems, student house, deposit etc


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Hi there, I recently finished a 2 year tenancy in a student house with 5 others. I'll answer the questions named in the sticky thread then I'll get into the issues:

 

• Whether the tenancy was granted verbally or in writing.

writing

 

• If it was granted in writing, state the date on which the tenancy began, and the length of the initial term if any.

1st August 2010, 12 months - Then extended another 12 months to end 1st august 2012

 

• State the amount of the original rent and how often the rent is payable (e.g. per week, per calendar month, per quarter, etc).

6 people £75pppw Or £325pp every 4 weeks. Paid seperately by each tenant every 4 weeks.

 

• If the tenancy has ended, state how it was ended (e.g. notice by the landlord, notice by the tenant, agreement of both parties, etc), and state the date on which the tenant moved out.

Ended 1st August 2012 (agreed end date). Tenants moved out around June, but were back for graduation etc, and I wanted to enter the house near the end of july.

 

 

as an inventory taken, and signed by the tenant?

I rmemeber an inventory being taken in the first year, another inventory was not taken after the first 12 month tenancy had run out.

 

- How much deposit was taken, and do you have details of the tenancy deposit scheme(if any) it is held in?

£325 per person so £1950. Do not have any details of depopsit scheme, we dont seem to have been given any information regarding this.

 

- In the tenancy agreement, how is the deposit held if held by agent - stakeholder or landlords agent?

Don't know, landlord presumably as we have not used a letting agent.

 

 

Firstly, the landlord has not mentioned giving the deposit back at all as of yet. The house could have done with a bit of a spring clean but we did make an attempt to tidy and clean the house. The landlord spoke to one of the other tenants on the phone a few weeks ago and said he was "shocked" by the state the property had been left in. He also mentioned damages but did not go into where these damages were or what they were. He has not given us any information stating that the deposit is in any scheme, and as we did not use a letting agent and went directly through him I have a feeling he may not have registered it. What is the procedure with this? As Ive seen if it is registered that is how you can query deductions to the deposit.

 

Unfortunately we do not have any photos of the property after we moved out (everyone moved different days, people were going up and down for graduations etc and it was forgotten).

 

Secondly I left our Television locked in my bedroom, and the landlord was told of this. I also left the television remotes and another tenants ipod (i found it while cleaning and knew he would be returning before the end of the tenancy). I wished to go up on sunday July 22nd (house was empty at this point), but was informed by another of the tenants who had been on the phone to him that the landlord was on holiday, and he had already changed the locks. Do we have a right to claim rent back as I had no access to a house I was still officially a tenant of?

 

Finally, the landlord got back from holiday and I went to move the television into the new house (I'm doing a course which lasts longer than 3 years unlike the other 5 tenants). This was on Saturday August 4th, I ran the landlord beforehand and due to him being at the olympics he stated someone doing work on the house would let me in. The man painting the house (Do we have to pay for repainting? over 2 years I'd presume that a mark or two on the walls would be counted as reasonable wear and tear) stated that he and the cleaners had been in 'most of the week' and when i went into the living room it was an absolute state, so the cleaners definately had at least another day of cleaning due to the mess theyd made in there.

 

Anyway, I went up to my bedroom, which had been unlocked. If the room had been cleaned it had only been hoovered again. The TV was still there (42", so pretty hard to get rid of with noone seeing), but the ipod and the tv remotes were not. I rang the landlord and he said thered been so many people in and out of the house over the past week that he wasnt confident it would be found, I stated in no uncertain terms it was left in my locked room (in a locked house) for safety and that is the reason it was in there. In fact it was so secure when the owner of the ipod went up for graduation he couldn't get it because I couldn't get my keys to him in time. The landlord mumbled something about ringing the cleaners up, and then asked if we had contents insurance on the house. The only reason i didn't get the items from my room during the tenancy was because the landlord changed the locks and I was away/working most days so only had a set few dates I could do. Is there any chance the landlord could be seen as being liable for the missing items? (Obviously the ipod is the most vbaluable, but the tv remotes were with it).

 

And thats everything I can think of at the moment, we have not had any contact to or from the landlord since then. I read deposits are usually paid back within 10 days of the end of the tenancy so thought I would leave it until then to see if anything was mentioned.

 

Sorry the rambling style of this thread, I just tried to get everything down I could think of.

In summary; landlord changed the locks 2 weeks before the tenancy ended, unable to access the property so can we claim rent back? Landlord unlocked and left a locked door open, meaning an ipod has gone 'missing' is he liable? We do not have any information on the deposit scheme used and the landlord has not mentioned returning any of the deposit to any of the tenants.

 

While accept some spring cleaning will have had to be done, all the halls and rooms were hoovered, bedrooms, kitchen and bathrooms surfaces were clean. I do not understand how the landlord could even try to justify spending almost £2000 to repair a property which was well looked after, fairly clean and had never even had a house party!

 

Thanks For your help,

John

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So you are in a house with 5 other students, each ind paying rent to LL & with written T contract.

 

Does this mean all 6 rented a single room as individual Ts (eg room 2, 10 High St , College Town) and share communal facilitiies with other 5, or did all 6 sign a single Agreement for T of 10 High St, with each tenant 'jointly & severally liable' for Tenancy?

 

Your T was for fixed 12 month term, commencing 1 Aug, which ended 31 July. Any occupant remaining on 1 Aug would create an auto SPT.

 

Since the academic year is less than 12 months, most LLs only offer ~10 mo. Most students are reluctant to pay full rent during Summer break, and unless returning to property for new Term, will arrange for personal contents during June, preferering to pay 1-2 night in hotel for Graduation.

 

If your AST states fixed term ended 1 Aug and no other prior Notice served, then you are entitled to property to 1 Aug. However you state you vacated in June without some personal contents.

Most ASTs have an Insurance provision that a property cannot be left unocupied for more than 21 days.

Hence YOU may have breached Contract provisions.

 

NEGOTIATE! Its cheaper than Court.

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